In the Queen of Cups we see the queen sitting on a royal chair. Two baby mermaids are engraved into the top of the chair along with a representation of a sea shell. On the side of the chair we see another baby mermaid holding a fish. The chair is situated just on the shoreline, the river or beach pebbles visible on the ground. In her hands, the Queen holds a magnificent cup and seems to be contemplating it. The cup has two angels protruding to the sides and an upside down cross on top.
Cups are of course representative of emotions in the Tarot and to a lesser extent, female qualities (the cup often being used to denote the womb or female in rituals, much like a witch may use her cauldron). The Queen is representative of the divine female side of life. There is therefore a strong doubling up in this card of female qualities and of sensing emotions, a great mother figure that both understands and knows us.
Water is another symbol of emotions and of being in tune with our feelings. We find mermaids and sea shells engraved in the Queen”s chair emphasising the Queen”s connection to water and hence feeling. On the side of the chair the mermaid holds a fish. The fish has been used as a symbol of fertility and life by both Christians and pagan religions.
The Queen in this card is the great archetypal mother. She at once knows our emotions and understands them. It is apt that she contemplates a magnificent cup. Possibly the Holy Grail so sought after for centuries. The cup represents fertility, the womb and emotions so in a sense the Queen is contemplating herself. The addition of angels to the side of the cup is important as it lends an air of divinity to the cup, beyond that of our more earthly fertility cycle. As a heavenly cup, it represents creationism, the realisation of the will of the supreme god made possible by the female side of the equation.
Hugely interesting is the upside down cross on the top of the cup. It is an apt reminder for the fertility and creationism aspects of this card and reminds us that ”what is above is below”.
In readings, the Queen of Cups may represent the querent or a mother figure. It reminds us to be aware of emotions and spend time contemplating them and understanding why we feel the way we do about things. We may be keeping emotions in check (locking them in the ”cup”) and we should deal with them rather than avoiding them. If we do this, we can look forward to a period of emotional stability, where our feelings are understood and we are in control rather than being led to action by excess emotion.
In spiritual readings, the Queen of cups encourages us to spend time contemplating creationism and the life cycle.
Given the level of emphasis on emotions in the card, it suggests we should trust our intuition at this time. We may have a hunch or feeling about a particular offer, project or journey and we should trust that hunch. It may lead us in a new direction or effect change in our lives but we should be unafraid of it and continue listening to our intuition.
We may also need to be aware of the emotions of others and attempt to attune ourselves to the emotional well-being of those around us. Modern life can preoccupy us with gadgets, tv, internet and a myriad other distractions. Take time out to ensure those around us are fine, that they are not suffering silently. There may be somebody close by who could use our help and in many cases, our intuition will point us in the right direction to them.
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Fertility is also denoted by the Queen of Cups and is a positive card to receive for those trying to conceive.
Reversed: The Queen of Cups reversed suggests we are out of touch with our emotions and are either repressing them or avoiding them. We should always allow ourselves to feel, it is an important part of many processes from getting over grief to soothing our anger. Avoiding our feelings only builds up steam for an event ahead of us.
In relationships, we may have problems with communicating our feelings to others. Getting a point across to our partners may be proving difficult and the Queen of Cups reversed suggests a blockage or miscommunication in understanding how each partner feels.
Delays or problems in fertility are indicated.
At the other extreme, the Queen of Cups reversed suggests we may be allowing our emotions to rule us. Excess anger, grief, jealousy and even putting on too much of a happy face can be bad for us. We may be swinging from happy to depressed and we need to learn how to control our emotions and deal with them.